Karen George: “Impression”


“Someone or something is leaning close to me now.”
—Marie Howe from “Prayer”

It happened twice,
the kind of thing you don’t tell

anyone. At work,
drying my hands,

the scent of lemon verbena
soap envelops me, the hot

air welcome.
I don’t remember what was going

on in my life, but it was winter
and my husband was alive.

The dryer stopped its flow.
No one else in the restroom,

the quiet intense, unsettling.
A prickling I felt

like static electricity, and a voice
whispered my name.

A deep peace settled over me,
as I pushed open the door,

walked to my desk,
the soft click of computer keys

like rain on glass.

Karen George is the author of five chapbooks, and two poetry collections from Dos Madres PressSwim Your Way Back (2014) and A Map and One Year (2018). Her work has appeared in Adirondack Review, Louisville Review, Naugatuck River Review, Sliver of Stone, America Magazine, and Still: The Journal.

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